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I.

JURISDICTION OF COURTS

RAMOS VS. PEPSI-COLA BOTTLING CO. OF THE PHILIPPINES


GR NO. L-22533
FEBRUARY 9, 1967

Facts: Placido and Augusto Ramos sued Pepsi-Cola Bottling Co. and Andres Bonifacio in the
CFI of Manilas as a consequence of collision involving the car of the former and the PEPSI-
COLA’s tractor-truck. Juan Anasco, personnel manager of defendant company testified on the
procedure and manner to which the driver was hired. CFI found PEPSI-COLA and Bonifacio
solidarily liable with Ramos. On appeal, CA found Bonifacio negligent, but modified it by
absolving defendant PEPSI-COLA from liability having proven the it exercised due diligence in
the selection of its driver. Plaintiffs thereupon appealed through petition for review.

Issue: Whether or not the Supreme Court may rule on the fact and credibility of the witness

Ruling: No. Añasco's credibility is not for this Court now to re-examine. And said witness
having been found credible by the Court of Appeals, his testimony, as accepted by said Court,
cannot at this stage be assailed. As We said in Co Tao v. Court of Appeals, G.R. No. L--
9194, April 25, 1957, assignments of error involving the credibility of witnesses and which in
effect dispute the findings of fact of the Court of Appeals, cannot be reviewed in these
proceedings. For a question to be one of law it must involve no examination of the probative
value of the evidence presented by the litigants or any of them. And the distinction is well-
known: There is a question of law in a given case when the doubt or difference arises as to what
the law is on a certain state of facts; there is a question of fact when the doubt or difference arises
as to the truth or the falsehood of alleged facts. From all this it follows that for the purposes of
this appeal, it must be taken as established that, as testified to by Añasco, PEPSI-COLA did in
fact carefully examine the driver-applicant Bonifacio as to his qualifications, experiences and
record of service, taking all steps mentioned by the Court of Appeals in its decision already
quoted.

MIRANT (PHILIPPINES) CORPORATION vs. DANILO SARIO


GR NO. 197598
NOVEMBER 21, 2012

Facts: Danilo Sario filed a complaint for illegal dismissal, backwages, damags and attorney’s
fees against Mirant Corporation, and its officers. At the time material to the case, the company
issued the 2002 MMD Policies and Procedures Manual for the guidance of its employees and
officers soliciting bid quotations and proposals from vendors, suppliers and contractors. This
manual was replaced by the 2004 Procurement Policies and Procedures Manual which was
disseminated and which became effective on August 31, 2004. Sario was dismissed for violation
of the provisions of the Manual. The Labor Arbiter declared that he was illegally dismissed.
NLRC reversed the decision. However, the CS reinstated the decision of the LA.

Issue: Whether or not the petition raised questions of fact rather than any clear and distinct
question of law
Ruling: No. There is a question of law in a given case when the doubt or difference arises as to
what the law is on a certain state of facts; there is a question of fact when the doubt or difference
arises as to the truth or falsehood of alleged facts. “For a question to be one of law, it must
involve no examination of the probative value of the evidence presented by the litigants or any of
them.” The facts are largely not in dispute. From the labor arbiter to the NLRC and then to the
CA, the discussions centered on Sario’s violations of the company’s 2002 and 2004 Procurement
Manuals, violations which provided the cause for his dismissal.

LANTING VS. OMBUDSMAN


GR NO. 141426
MAY 6, 2005

Facts: Zenaida Lanting was the Administrative Officer IV of the City Council of Manila. She
filed with the Office of the Ombudsman an affidavit-complaint charging then Manila Vice-
Mayor Jose Atienza, Jr. and respondents for violation of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices
Act. She alleged that these city officials unlawfully and feloniously appointed Ernesto Saw, Jr. a
Chinese citizen working in Taiwan to the position of Researcher in the City Council. The
charges was dismissed by the Ombudsman. Petitioner filed with the CA a petition for certiorari
and mandamus. CA issued a Resolution dismissing the petition on the ground that it has no
jurisdiction over the subject matter.

Issue: Whether or not the Court of Appeals have jurisdiction over the Ombudsman’s Resolution

Ruling: No. Considering that petitioner’s complaint is criminal in nature, this Court has the sole
authority to review the Ombudsman’s Resolutions on pure question of law as expressly
mandated in Section 14, 2nd paragraph of RA 6770. In Fabian vs. Desierto, we held that only
“appeals from the decisions of the Office of the Ombudsman in administrative disciplinary cases
should be taken to the Court of Appeals under the provisions of Rule 43.

FABIAN VS. DESIERTO


GR NO. 129742
SEPTEMBER 16, 1998

Facts: Teresita Fabian was the major stockholder and president of PROMAT Construction
Development Corporation which was engaged in the construction business. Private respondent
was the incumbent District engineer of the First Metro Manila Engineering District when he
allegedly committed the charges against him, oppression, misconduct, and disgraceful or
immoral conduct by employing acts of harassment, intimidation and threats against the
petitioner. The Ombudsman found the private respondent guilty of misconduct. On motion for
reconsideration, Deputy Ombudsman Jesus Guerrero set aside the Order of respondent
Ombudsman and exonerated private respondent from the administrative charges.

Issue: Whether or not the administrative disciplinary cases, orders or decisions of the Office of
the Ombudsman may be appealed to the Supreme Court
Ruling: No. Section 27 of RA 6770 cannot validly authorize on appeal to this Court. From
decisions of the Office of the Ombudsman on administrative disciplinary cases. It consequently
violates the prescription in Section 30, article VI of the Constitution against a law which
increases the appellate jurisdiction of this Court. No countervailing argument has been cogently
presented to justify such disregard of the constitutional prohibition which was intended to give
this Court a measure of control over cases placed under its appellate jurisdiction. Otherwise, the
indiscriminate enactment of legislation enlarging its appellate jurisdiction would unnecessarily
hinder the court.

HONORIO BERNARDO VS. HEIRS OF EUSEBIO VILLEGAS


GR NO. 183357
MARCH 15, 2010

Facts: Heirs of Eusebio Villegas filed a Complaint for accion publiciana against Honorio
Bernardo, Romeo Gaza and Monina Francisco. The complaint filed did not state the assessed
value of the property in dispute. The TC rendered judgment in favour of respondents and ordered
petitioner, Gaza and Francisco to vacate the subject land. On Appeal, petitioner questioned the
jurisdiction of the trial court. The CA ruled that petitioner is estopped from raising the issue of
jurisdiction because he failed to file a motion to dismiss on such ground.

Issue: Whether or not estoppel bars petitioner from raising the issue of lack of jurisdiction

Ruling: Yes. The general rule is that the jurisdiction of a court may be questioned at any stage of
the proceedings. Lack of jurisdiction is one of those excepted grounds where the court may
dismiss a claim or a case at any time when it appears from the pleadings or the evidence on
record that any of those ground exists, even if they were not raised in the answer or in a motion
to dismiss. The reason is that jurisdiction is conferred by law, and lack of it affects the very
authority of the court to take cognizance of and to render judgment on the action. However,
estoppel sets in when a party participates in all stages of a case before challenging the
jurisdiction of the lower court. One cannot belatedly reject or repudiate its decision after
voluntarily submitting to its jurisdiction, just to secure affirmative relief against one’s opponent
or after failing to obtain such relief. The Court ha, time and again, frowned upon the undesirable
practice of a party submitting a case for decision and then accepting the judgment, only if
favourable, and attacking it for lack of jurisdiction when adverse.

ENCARNACION VS. AMIGO


GR NO. 169793
SEPTEMBER 15, 2006

Facts: Encarnacion filed an ejectment case against respondent for allegedly depriving him of his
actual possession and occupation of a portion of the subject land. In his answer, respondent
alleged the he has been in actual possession and occupation of a portion of the subject land since
1968 and that the issuance of Free Patent and titles in the name of the petitioner was tainted with
irregularities. The MTC rendered judgment ordering the defendant to vacate the portion of the
land. On Appeal, the RTC dismissed the case on the ground of lack of jurisdiction on the part of
the MTC. On a petition for review under Rule 42 of the ROC before the CA, it remanded the
case to the Regional Trial Court.

Issue: Whether or not the Court of Appeals erred in remanding the case to the Regional Trial
Court

Ruling: No. the material element that determines the proper action to be filed for the recovery of
the possession of the property in this case is the length of time of dispossession. Under the Rules
of Court, the remedies of forcible entry and unlawful detainer are grated to a person deprived of
the possession of any land or building by force, intimidation, threat, strategy, or stealth, or a
lessor, vendor, vendee, or other person against whom the possession of any land or building is
unlawfully withheld after the expiration or termination of the right to hold possession by virtue
of any contract, express or implied, or other person. These remedies afford the person deprived
of the possession to file at any time within one year after such unlawful deprivation or
withholding of possession, an action in the proper Municipal Trial Court against the person or
persons unlawfully withholding or depriving of possession, or any person or persons claiming
under them, for the restitution of such possession, together with damages and costs. Thus, if the
dispossession has not lasted for more than one year, an ejectment proceeding is proper and the
inferior court acquires jurisdiction. On the other hand, if the dispossession lasted for more than
one year, the proper action to be filed is an accion publiciana which should be brought to the
proper Regional Trial Court.

GARCIA VS. HON. REY ALLAN DRILON


GR NO. 179267
JUNE 25, 2013

Facts: Rosalie Jaype- Garcia filed, for herself and in behalf of her minor children, a verified
petition before the RTC of Bacolod City for the issuance of a Temporary Protection Order
against her husband, Jesus Garcia, pursuant to RA 9262. RTC issued the TPO effective for 30
days. Private respondent filed for the issuance of another TPO ex parte for alleged commission
of new acts of harassment against her and their children. Petitioner filed before the CA
challenging the constitutionality of RA 9262 and the validity of the modified TPO. CA dismissed
the petition. Petitioner however argues that the Family Court has limited authority and
jurisdiction.

Issue: Whether or not the Family Court has jurisdiction on the issue of constitutionality of a
statute

Ruling: Family Courts have authority and jurisdiction to consider the constitutionality of a
statute. At the outset, it must be stressed that Family Courts are special courts, of the same level
as Regional Trial Courts. Under RA 8369, otherwise known as the “Family Courts Act of 1997,”
family courts have exclusive original jurisdiction to hear and decide cases of domestic violence
against women and children. In accordance with said law, the Supreme Court designate from
among the branches of the Regional Trial Courts at least one Family court in each of several key
cities identified. To achieve harmony with the first mentioned law, Section 7 of RA 9262 now
provides that Regional Trial Courts designated as Family Courts shall have original and
exclusive jurisdiction over cases of VAWC defined under the latter law.

Inspite of its designation as a Family Court, the RTC of Bacolod City remains possessed
of authority as a court of general original jurisdiction to pass upon all kinds of cases whether
civil, criminal, special proceedings, land registration, guardianship, naturalization, admiralty or
insolvency. It is settled that RTCs have jurisdiction to resolve the constitutionality of a statute,
“this authority being embraced in the general definition of the judicial power to determine what
are the valid and binding laws by the criterion of their conformity to the fundamental law.” The
constitution vests the power of judicial review or the power to declare the constitutionality or
validity of a law, treaty, international or executive agreement, presidential decree, order,
instruction, ordinance, or regulation not only in this Court, but in all RTCs.

MADRINAN VS. MADRINAN


GR NO. 159374
JULY 12, 2007

Facts: Respondent Francisca Madrinan filed a petition for habeas corpus of her children
Ronnick, Phillip an Francis Angelo in the Court of Appeals alleging that Felipe Madrinan’s act
of leaving the conjugal dwelling after their quarrel disrupted the education of their children and
deprived them of their mother’s care. The parties initially agreed that petitioner would return the
custody of their children, but he had a change of heart and decided to file a memorandum. He
claimed that under Section 5(b) of RA 8369, family courts have exclusive original jurisdiction to
hear and decide the petition for habeas corpus filed by the respondent.

Issue: Whether or not the Court of Appeals have a jurisdiction to hear and decide the petition for
habeas corpus.

Ruling: Yes. The Court of Appeals should take cognizance of the case since there is nothing in
RA 8369 that revoked its jurisdiction to issue writs of habeas corpus involving the custody of
minors. We rule therefore that RA 8369 did not divest the Court of Appeals and the Supreme
Court of their jurisdiction over habeas corpus cases involving the custody of minors. The
provisions of RA 8369 reveal no manifest intent to revoke the jurisdiction of the Court of
Appeals and Supreme Court to issue writs of habeas corpus relating to the custody of minors.
Further, it cannot be said that the provisions of RA 8369, RA 7092 are absolutely incompatible
since RA 8369 does not prohibit the Court of Appeals and the Supreme Court from issuing writs
of habeas corpus in cases involving the custody of minors. Thus, the provisions of RA 8369 must
be read in harmony with RA 7029 and BP 129 – that family courts have concurrent jurisdiction
with the Court of Appeals and the Supreme Court in petitions for habeas corpus where the
custody of minors is at issue.

MEDICAL PLAZA MAKATI CONDOMINIUM VS. CULLEN


GR NO. 181416
Facts: Respondent Cullen purchased from Meridien Land Holding, Inc. condominium Unit No.
1201 of the petitioner. Respondent filed a Complaint for Damages against MPCC in RTC
Makati, acting as a regular court for allegedly preventing him from exercising his right to vote
and be voted during election of MPMCC’s BOD. RTC dismissed the complaint on the ground
that the action falls within the exclusive jurisdiction of HLURB and that the issues raised are
intra-corporate between the corporation and member. On appeal, the CA reversed the decision
holding that the controversy is an ordinary civil action for damages within the jurisdiction of
regular courts.

Issue: Whether or not the case falls within the RTC sitting as a special commercial court or an
ordinary action for damages within the jurisdiction of regular courts.

Ruling: It is settled rule that jurisdiction over the subject matter is determined by the allegations
in the complaint. It is not affected by the pleas or the theories set up by the defendant in an
answer or a motion to dismiss. Otherwise, jurisdiction would become dependent almost entirely
upon the whims of the defendant. Under the nature of the controversy test, “the controversy must
not only be rooted in the existence of an intra-corporate relationship, but must as well pertain to
the enforcement of the parties’ correlative rights and obligations under the Corporation Code and
the internal and Intra-corporate regulatory rules of the corporation.” In other words, jurisdiction
should be determined by considering both the relationship of the parties as well as the nature of
the question involved. Applying the test, we find and so hold that the case involves intra-
corporate controversy. It obviously arose from the intra-corporate relations between the parties,
and the questions involved pertain to their rights and obligations under the Corporation Code and
matters relating to the regulation of the corporation.

SERRENO VS. SPOUSES GUTIERREZ


GR NO. 162366
NOVEMBER 10, 2006

Facts: Spouses Anselmo and Carmelita Gutierrez filed a complaint for forcible entry against
petitioners before the MTC of Lubao, Pampanga. Respondents claimed that the subject land was
a portion of the estate of Albino Morales, and as heirs of Albino Morales, they were in actual,
adverse, continuous and physical possession. MTC dismissed the case finding that the real issue
involved the question of ownership and not mere possession.

Issue:
Whether or not the trial court erred in applying the second paragraph of Section 8, rule 40 of the
Rules of Court in deciding the ejectment case brought to it on appeal by respondents

Ruling: The RTC erred when it agreed with the MTC’s decision to dismiss the case. Along with
the erroneous premise, the RTC also blundered in applying Section 8, Rule 40 of the Rules of
Court. The first paragraph contemplates an appeal from an order of dismissal issued without trial
of the case on the merits. On the other hand, the second paragraph deals with an appeal from an
order of dismissal but the case was tried on the merits. Both paragraphs, however, involve the
same ground for dismissal, i.e., lack of jurisdiction. Clearly, the Section is inapplicable to the
present case since, as the Court of Appeals correctly held, the MTC had jurisdiction over this
ejectment case even if the question of possession could be resolved without passing upon the
issue of ownership. Nonetheless, the RTC had appellate jurisdiction over the case and its
decision should be deemed promulgated in the exercise of that jurisdiction. Clearly then, the
amount involved is immaterial for purposes of the RTC’s appellate jurisdiction

HEIRS OF BAUTISTA VS. LINDO


GR NO. 208232
MARCH 10, 2014

Facts: Bautista filed a complaint for repurchase of a land which he sold to respondents before
the RTC, Branch 32, Lupon, Davao Oriental anchoring his cause of action with the Public Land
Act. Respondents raised the defense of lack of cause of action, estoppel, prescription and laches
a s defences. Compromise agreement was entered with Francisco and Welhilmina which was
approved by the RTC. However, other respondents filed a Motion to Dismiss alleging that the
complaint did to state the value of the property sought to be recovered, and that the total selling
price of all the properties is only sixteen thousand five hundred pesos. RTC dismissed the case.

Issue: Whether or not the RTC erred in granting the motion for the dismissal of the case on the
ground of lack of jurisdiction over the subject matter

Ruling: Yes. In heirs of Jose Fernando vs. De Belen, it was held that the party raising defences
to the complaint, actively participating I the proceedings by filing pleadings, presenting his
evidence, and invoking its authority by asking for an affirmative relief is deemed estopped from
questioning the jurisdiction of the court. Here, we note that aside from the belated filing of the
motion to dismiss – it having been filed nine years from the filing of the complaint – respondents
actively participated in the proceedings. Having fully participated in all stages of the case, and
even invoking the RTC’s authority by asking for affirmative reliefs, respondents can no longer
assail the jurisdiction of the said trial court. Simply put, considering the extent of their
participation in the case, they are, as they should be, considered estopped from raising lack of
jurisdiction as ground for the dismissal of the action.

PATRANCO NORTH EXPRESS, INC. VS. STANDARD INSURANCE COMPANY, INC.


GR NO. 140746
MARCH 16, 2005

Facts: Crispin Gicale was driving the passenger jeepney owned by his mother Martina Gicale.
Alexander Buncan, on the other hand, was driving a bus owned by Pantranco North Express Inc.
When the two vehicles were negotiating a curve along the highway, the passenger bus overtook
the jeepney. In so doing, the passenger bus hit the left rear side of the jeepney and sped
away. Standard and Martina were prompted to file a complaint for sum of money with the RTC
of Manila. Pantranco and Buncan denied the allegations of the complaint and asserted that it is
the MeTC which has jurisdiction over the case. The trial court ruled in favor of Standard and
Martina. The appellate court affirmed the decision of the RTC.
Issue:Whether or not there was a misjoinder of parties in the case.

Ruling: No. Sec. 6, Rule 3 of the Revised Rules of Court provides the following requirements
for a permissive joinder of parties: (a) the right to relief arises out of the same transaction or
series of transactions; (b) there is a question of law or fact common to all the plaintiffs or
defendants; and (c) such joinder is not otherwise proscribed by the provisions of the Rules on
jurisdiction and venue.

In this case, there is a single transaction common to all, that is, Pantranco’s bus hitting
the rear side of the jeepney. There is also a common question of fact, that is, whether petitioners
are negligent. There being a single transaction common to both respondents, consequently, they
have the same cause of action against petitioners.

To determine identity of cause of action, it must be ascertained whether the same


evidence which is necessary to sustain the second cause of action would have been sufficient to
authorize a recovery in the first. Here, had respondents filed separate suits against petitioners, the
same evidence would have been presented to sustain the same cause of action. Thus, the filing
by both respondents of the complaint with the court below is in order. Such joinder of parties
avoids multiplicity of suit and ensures the convenient, speedy and orderly administration of
justice.

Further, the Court reiterates the Totality rule exemplified by Sec. 33 (1) of BP
129: “where there are several claims or causes of action between the same or different parties,
embodied in the same complaint, the amount of the demand shall be the totality of the claims in
all the causes of action, irrespective of whether the causes of action arose out of the same or
different transactions.”

II. CAUSE OF ACTION

CAMARINES SUR ELECTRIC VS. AQUINO


GR NO. 167691
SEPTEMBER 23, 2008

Facts: Expedita Aquino bought several computers and leased a commercial building in Tigaon,
Camarines Sur for purposes of establishing a computer gaming business. She had the electrical
building restored after it had been cut because of its former tenant. Petitioner alleged that
respondent violated RA 7832. Upon failure to tender payments and other differential building,
petitioner disconnected the electric line of respondents permanently. Petitioner argued that there
was no cause of action on the Complaint for Damages filed by the respondent.

Issue: Whether or not respondent’s complaint for damages stated a cause of action against
petitioner

Ruling: Yes. There is a cause of action when the following elements are present: (1) the legal
right of the plaintiff; (2) the correlative obligation of the defendant and (3) the act or omission of
the defendant in violation of said legal right. In determining the presence of these elements, only
the facts alleged in the complaint must be considered. The test is whether the court can render a
valid judgement on the complaint based on the facts alleged and the prayer asked for, such that
the facts alleged in the complaint, if true, would justify the relief sought.

Based on the allegations in the amended complaint, we hold that respondent stated a
cause of action for damages. Respondent was in possession of the property supplied with
electricity by petitioner when the electric service was disconnected. This resulted in the alleged
injury complained of which can be threshed out in a trial on the merits. Whethe one is a party or
not in a contract is not determinative of the existence of a cause of action. Participation in a
contract is not an element in considering whether or not a complaint states a cause of action
because even a third party outside the contract can have a cause of action against either or both
contracting parties.

BPI FAMILY vs. DE COSCUELLA


GR NO. 167724
JUNE 27, 2006

Facts: Margarita Coscolluela and her husband Oscar Coscolluela obtained an agricultural sugar
crop loan from the Far East Bank & Trust Co. Bacolod City Branch. The loan was treated as a
single account which was amounted to P13, 592, 492.00 as evidence by 67 Promissory Notes. A
real estate mortgage was likewise executed by the spouses in favour of the same bank for credit
accommodation which may be obtained fixed at 7, 000,000.00. Upon failure to settle, FEBTC
filed a complaint with the RTC for the collection of the principal amount plus interest.
Respondent insisted that by filing a complaint for a sum of money against her, petitioner thereby
split its cause of action, given a pending case for extrajudicial foreclosure of mortgage which
was likewise filed by the petitioner.

Issue: Whether or not the respondent may file simultaneous actions for foreclosure and for
collection

Ruling: No. Decisive of the principal issue is the ruling of this Court in Bachrach Motor Co.,
Inc. vs. Esteban Icarangal and Oriental Commercial Co., Inc. in which it ruled that on the non-
payment of a note secured by a mortgage, the creditor has a single cause of action consists in the
recovery of the credit with execution of the suit. In a mortgage credit transaction, the credit gives
rise to a personal action for collection of the money. The mortgage is the guarantee which gives
rise to a mortgage foreclosure suit to collect from the very property that secured the debt. The
action of the creditor is anchored on one and the same cause: the non-payment by the debtor of
the debt to the creditor-mortgagee. Though the debt may be covered by a promissory note or
several promissory notes and is covered by a real estate mortgage, the latter is subsidiary to the
former and both refer to one and the same obligation. A mortgage creditor may institute two
alternative remedies against the mortgage debtor, either a personal action for the collection of
debt, or a real action to foreclose the mortgage, but not both. Each remedy is complete by itself.

ARREZA VS. MONTANO DIAZ


GR NO. 133113
AUGUST 30, 2001

Facts: Bliss Development Corporation is the owner of a housing unit located at Balara, Quezon
City. In a case involving ownership between Arreza and Diaz before the RTC of Makati, Bliss
filed a complaint for interpleader to which the court resolved in favour of Arreza. Respondent
Diaz was constrained to deliver the property with all its improvements to petitioner. Thereafter,
respondent Diaz filed a complaint against Bliss and the respondent seeking reimbursement to
him of his acquisition and improvement on the subject property.

Issue: Whether or not similar cause of action exists between the action for interpleader and the
complaint for damages, and such the present case shall be dismiss for res judicata

Ruling: Yes. In cases involving res judicata, the parties and the causes of action are identical or
substantially the same in the prior as well as the subsequent action. The judgment in the first
action is conclusive as to every matter offered and received therein and as to any other matter
admissible therein and which might have been offered for that purpose, hence said judgment is
an absolute bar to a subsequent action for the same cause. The bar extends to questions
“necessarily involved in an issue, and necessarily adjudicated, or necessarily implied in the final
judgment, although no specific finding may have been made in reference thereto, and although
such matters were directly referred to in the pleadings and were not actually or formally
presented.” Said prior judgment is conclusive in a subsequent suit between the same parties on
the same subject matter, and on the same cause of action, not only as to matters which were
decided in the first action, but also as to every other matter which the parties could have properly
set up in the prior suit. In the present case, we find there is an identity of causes of action in the
prior case.

PAGSISIHAN VS. COURT OF APPEALS


GR NO. L-34885
JANUARY 28, 1980

Facts: Plaintiffs are the children of the late spouses Ambrosio Pagsisihan and Isabel Esguerra.
During his lifetime, Ambrosio executed a deed of pacto de retro sale in favour of Spouses
Garcia. However, he failed to redeem the same. For reason that he was misled into signing the
said deed, Ambrosio filed an action praying that the deed be declared as an equitable mortgage.
After some time, Ambrosio filed a petition to dismiss the case alleging that they already
concluded an amicable settlement. Lower court dismissed the case. On July 14, 1960, Sps.
Garcia executed an affidavit of consolidation on ownership affirming that the vendor failed to
redeem the land within he stipulated period. 12 years after, plaintiffs filed an action praying for
the annulment of the deed of pacto de retro sale.

Issue: Whether or not there is identity of cause of action between the first case for declaration of
the Deed of Pacto de Retro as equitable mortgage and the second case, for declaration of nullity
of the Deed of Pacto de Retro and the Affidavit of Consolidation of Ownership.

Ruling: The cause of action in the first case is different from that of the second case. They are
not one and the same cause of action that could give rise to the defense of res judicata. The first
case seeks only to declare the deed of pacto de retro as a mere equitable mortgage. The action is
premised on Article 1602 of the New Civil Code. On the other hand, the second case seeks the
nullification of the deed of pacto de retro sale with right to repurchase as void from the
beginning, as well as nullification of the consolidation of ownership, there having been no
judicial order issued authorizing the same as provided in the New Civil Code. It is to be noted
that when the first case was filed on April 18, 1955, the said affidavit was not yet in existence for
it was executed on July 14, 1960 and registered on August 15, 1960.

The evidence required to prove the allegations of the second cause of action must
necessarily be more than what is needed in the first case, because of the allegations of facts
supporting the issues as earlier indicated, which are not only more in number, but different in
nature than those raised in the first case.

FLORES VS. MALLARE-PHILLIPS


GR NO. L – 66620
SEPTEMBER 24, 1986

Facts: Petitioner has appealed by certiorari from the order of Judge Mallare-Phillipps of the RTC
of Baguio City and Benguet province which dismissed his complaint for lack of jurisdiction.
Petitioner did not attach in his petition a copy of the complaint. The order appealed from states
that the first cause of action alleged in the complaint was against respondent Ignacio Binongcal
for refusing to pay the amount of P11, 643.00 representing cost of truck tires which he purchased
on credit from petitioner; the second cause of action was against respondent Calion for allegedly
refusing to pay P10, 212.00 representing cost of truck tires. Respondent filed a motion to dismiss
for lack of jurisdiction.

Issue: Whether or not the case shall be dismissed for lack of jurisdiction

Ruling: Under the present law, the totality rule is applied also to cases where two or more
plaintiffs having separate causes of action against a defendant join in a single complaint, as well
as to cases where a plaintiff has separate causes of action against two or more defendants joined
in a single complaint. However, the causes of action in favour of the two or more plaintiffs or
against the two or more defendants should arise out of the same transaction or series of
transactions and there should be a common question of law or fact, as provided in Section 6 of
Rule 3. In other words, in cases of permissive joinder of parties, whether as plaintiffs or as
defendants, under Section 6 of Rule 3, the total of all the claims shall now furnish the
jurisdictional test. Needless to state also, if instead of joining or being joined in one complaint
separate actions are filed by or against the parties, the amount demanded in each complaint shall
furnish the jurisdictional test.

The lower court correctly held that the jurisdictional test is subject to the rules on joinder
of parties pursuant to Section 5 of Rule 2 and Section 6 of Rule 3 of the rules of Court that, after
a careful scrutiny of the complaint, it appears that there is a misjoinder of parties for the reason
that the claims against respondents Binongcal and Calion are separate and distinct and neither of
which falls within its jurisdiction.
JIMMY GO. VS. UCPB
GR NO 156187
NOVEMBER 11, 2004

Facts: Petitioner Jimmy Go and Alberto Looyuko applied for an Omnibus Line accommodation
with respondent UCPB in the amount of 900 Million Pesos. The transaction was secured by a
Real Estate Mortgages. The approved Omnibus Line accommodation was subsequently
cancelled by respondent UCPB. Hence, petitioner demanded the return of the TCTs. UCPC
refused to return the same. Petitioner filed a complaint for cancellation of REM and damages
with RTC Pasig City. Respondent bank instead of filing an answer, filed a motion to dismiss on
the ground of improper venue. RTC denied the motion to dismiss. CA reversed the decision of
the RTC.

Issue: Whether or not the case may be properly dismissed for improper venue

Ruling: The controlling factor in determining venue for cases of the above nature is the primary
objective for which said cases are filed. In Carandang vs. CA, we held that an action for
nullification of the mortgage documents and foreclosure of the mortgaged property is a real
action that affects the title to the property. Thus, venue of the real action is before the court
having jurisdiction over the territory in which the property lies. In sum, the cancellation of the
real estate mortgage, subject of the instant petitioner, is a real action, considering that a real
estate mortgage is a real right and a real property by itself. An action for cancellation of real
estate mortgage is necessarily an action affecting the title to the property. It is, therefore, a real
action which should be commenced and tried in Mandaluyong City, the place where the subject
property lies.

PAGLAUM MANAGEMENT & DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION VS. UNION BANK


OF THE PHILIPPINES
GR NO. 179018
JUNE 12, 2012

Facts: Union Bank of the Philippines (Union Bank) extended HealthTech a credit line in the
amount of P 10,000,000 which was eventually increased to 36,500,000. This was secured by
three real estate mortgage on the lands. The venue in the real estate mortgage was stipulated to
be in Makati, Metro Manila or in the place where any of the Mortgaged Properties is
located(Cebu), at the absolute option of the Mortgagee, the parties hereto waiving any other
venue. They both executed a Restructuring Agreement whereby it states that that any action or
proceeding arising out of or in connection therewith shall be commenced in Makati City, with
both parties waiving any other venue. Union Bank foreclosed the properties through an auction
sale, bought it as the sole bidder as secured Certificate of Sale. Healthcare filed a complaint for
annulment of sale and titles on the RTC of MAKATI. The RTC ruled in favor of Healthtech and
restrained restraining Union Bank from proceeding with the auction sale. Union Bank filed a
Motion to Dismiss citing lack of jurisdiction and improper venue. RTC of Makati granted Union
Banks motion to dismiss. CA affirmed Makati RTC. Union Bank argues that the Restructuring
Agreement only pertains to the loan and does not affect the stipulations in the real mortgage
which states that it has the option to choose the venue. Healthtech argues the restructuring
agreement also carries with it the venue for the settlement of casesfor the real mortgages. Hence,
this appeal to the Supreme Court.

Issue: Whether or not RTC Makati City is the proper venue for the case

Ruling: Yes. The Supreme Court held that an action to annul a real estate mortgage foreclosure
sale is no different from an action to annul a private sale of real property. Therefore, this case
falls under Rule 4. The general rule in Rule 4 is that the venue is on where the property is
located. However, among the exceptions is where the parties have validly agreed in writing
before the filing of the action on the exclusive venue thereof. The Supreme Court adds that the
mere stipulation on the venue of an action, however, is not enough to preclude parties from
bringing a case in other venues. The parties must be able to show that such stipulation is
exclusive. Failure to do so would result to the parties stipulating additional venues for the case.
In the case at bar, both the stipulation in the Real Estate Mortgage and the Restructuring
Agreement have words of exclusivity. The Supreme Court held that the Restructuring Agreement
should prevail as this modified the entire loan obligation. The later Restructuring Agreement
reveals the intention of the parties to implement a restrictive venue stipulation, which applies not
only to the principal obligation, but also to the mortgages

Briones vs. Court of Appeals


G.R. No. 204444
January 14, 2015

Facts: Briones is the owner of a property covered by TCT No. 160689 (subject property). Later,
his sister informed him that his property had been foreclosed and a writ of possession had
already been issued in favor of Cash Asia. Upon investigation, Briones discovered that he
purportedly executed a promissory note, loan agreement, and deed of real estate mortgage
covering the subject property in favor of Cash Asia in order to obtain a loan in the amount of
P3,500,000.00 from the latter. In this relation, Briones initiated a complaint in the RTC of
Manila praying that the subject documents be declared null and void. Cash Asia filed a Motion to
Dismiss praying for the outright dismissal of Briones’ complaint on the ground of improper
venue on the basis of a stipulation in both documents designating Makati City as the exclusive
venue in the event of litigation between the parties arising out of the loan and mortgage.

Issue: Whether or not the motion to dismiss of Cash Asia should be granted

Ruling: No. A complaint directly assailing the validity of the written instrument itself should not
be bound by the exclusive venue stipulation contained therein and should be filed in accordance
with the general rules on venue. To be sure, it would be inherently consistent for a complaint of
this nature to recognize the exclusive venue stipulation when it, in fact, precisely assails the
validity of the instrument in which such stipulation is contained.
In this case, the venue stipulation found in the subject contracts is indeed restrictive in
nature, considering that it effectively limits the venue of the actions arising therefrom to the
courts of Makati City. However, it must be emphasized that Briones’ complaint directly assails
the validity of the subject contracts, claiming forgery in their execution. Given this circumstance,
Briones cannot be expected to comply with the aforesaid venue stipulation, as his compliance
therewith would mean an implicit recognition of their validity. Hence, pursuant to the general
rules on venue, Briones properly filed his complaint before a court in the City of Manila where
the subject property is located.

ORBETA VS. ORBETA


GR NO. 166837
NOVEMBER 27, 2006

Facts: Petitioner and respondent Ruben Orbeta are lawfully married and co-owners of a 455
square meter parcel of land. Petitioner left for US as their relationship became estranged. When
petitioner came back, she learned that her husband obtained a loan and used the subject property
as a collateral. She then filed a Complaint for Annulment of Deed of Mortgage with Damages in
the RTC of Las Pinas City. Respondent filed a Motion to Dismiss alleging that the complaint is a
real action and should have been filed over the area where it is located.

Issue: Whether or not the Complaint for Annulment of Deed of Mortgage with Damages is a real
action

Ruling: Yes. The recent case of Chua vs. Total Office Products and Services, Inc. provides a
proper precedent. In that case, respondent filed a complaint for the Declaration of nullity of a
loan contract for lack of consent and consideration. It contended that the purported loan and real
estate mortgage contracts were fictitious since it never authorized anybody to enter into said
transactions and that the complaint remained a personal action even if it will necessarily affect
the accessory real estate mortgage. The allegations of respondent in that case strikingly resemble
petitioner’s arguments in this case. Notably, petitioner herein also seeks the annulment of the
Deed of Mortgage executed by the respondents on the grounds that she never gave her consent to
the execution of the deed and that her signature thereon was forged. Given this similarity in
factual milieu, we cannot but apply the Court’s ruling, that an action annul a contract of loan and
its accessory real estate mortgage is a personal action.

III. PARTIES TO CIVIL ACTION

METROBANK VS. HON. FLORO ALEJO


GR NO. 141970
SEPTEMBER 10, 2001
Facts: Spouses Raul and Christina Acampado obtained loans from petitioner in the amounts of
P5,000,000.00 and P2,000,000.00, respectively. As security for the payment of these credit
accomodations, the spouses executed in favor of petitioner a Real Estate Mortgage and an
Amendment of Real Estate Mortgage over a parcel of land registered in their names. Complaint
for Declaration of Nullity of TCT No. V-41319 was filed by respondent Sy Tan Se against the
spouses. Petitioner was not made a party to the case nor was she notified of its existence. The
spouses defaulted in the payment of their loan and extrajudicial foreclosure proceedings were
initiated wherein the petitioner submitted the highest and winning bid. A Certificate of Sale was
issued in their favor. Upon presentation to the Register of Deeds of the Affidavit of
Consolidation of Ownership, petitioner was informed of the decision in the aforementioned civil
case (complaint for declaration of nullity of TCT) declaring the spouses’ TCT null and void. The
petitioner filed with the CA a petition for annulment of the RTC Decision.

Issue: Whether or not the judgement of the Trial Court should be annulled

Ruling: Yes. The judgement of the trial court should also be declared null and void because the
petitioner, who is an indispensable party, was not impleaded in the civil case. It is clear that the
presence of indispensable parties is necessary to vest the court with jurisdiction, which is “the
authority to her and determine a cause, the right to act in a case.” The absence of an
indispensable party renders all subsequent actuations of the court null and void, for want of
authority to act, not only as to the absent parties but even as those present.

VESAGAS VS. COURT OF APPEALS


GR NO. 1242924
DECEMBER 5, 2001

Facts: Respondent spouses Delfino and Helenda Raniel are members in good standing of the
Luz Village Tennis Club, Inc.. They alleged that petitioner Teodoro B. Vesagas (club president)
in conspiracy with Wilfred D. Asis (VP), stripped them of their lawful membership, without due
process of law. They filed a complaint with the SEC against petitioners, asking to declare their
expulsion from the Club as illegal. Petitioners filed a motion to dismiss on the ground that the
SEC lacks jurisdiction over the subject matter of the case. Petitioners contend that the complaint
should be dismissed for failure to include the club as one of the respondents therein. Motion
denied.

Issue: Whether or not the case shall be dismissed for failure to include the club as one of the
respondents

Ruling: No. Dismissal is not the remedy for non-joinder of parties. Under the Rules, the remedy
is to implead the non-party, claimed to be necessary or indispensable, in the action, thus: “SEC
11. Misjoinder and non-joinder of parties. – Neither misjoinder or non-joinder of parties is a
ground for dismissal of an action. Parties may be dropped or added by order of the court on
motion of any party or on its own initiative at any stage of the action and on such terms as are
just. Any claim against a misjoinder party may be severed and proceeded with separately.
LIM VS. LIM-YU
GR NO. 138343
FEBRUARY 19, 2001

Facts: Manzano filed a request before the Corporate and Legal Affairs Department of the SEC
asking for the exemption of the 15, 515 shares from the registration requirements, which was
granted. Due to the issuance of the unsubscribed shares to petitioner, all of the LIMPAN’s
authorized capital stock became fully subscribed. Respondent filed a complaint against the
members of the BOD who approved the same. In their answer, petitioner raised the defense of
failure to state a cause of action and legal capacity to sue.

Issue: Whether or not the respondent had the legal capacity to file the Complaint before the SEC

Ruling: Yes. The TRO allows respondent to act for herself and to enter into any contract on her
own behalf. However, she cannot transact in representation of or for the benefit of her parents,
brother or sisters, or the Limpan Investment Corporation. Contrary to what petitioners suggest,
all that is prohibited is an action that will bind them. In short, she can only on and in her own
behalf, not that of petitioners or the Corporation. We hold., however, that the suit of respondent
cannot be characterized as derivative, because she was complaining only of the violation of her
pre-emptive right under Section 39 of the Corporation Code. She was merely praying that she be
allowed to subscribe to the additional issuances of stocks in proportion to her shareholdings to
enable her to preserve her percentage of ownership in the corporation. She was therefore not
acting for the benefit of the corporation. Quite the contrary, she was suing on her own behalf, out
of a desire to protect and preserve her pre-emptive rights. Unquestionably, the TRO did not
prevent her from pursuing that action.

IV. PROVISIONAL REMEDIES

JAVELLANA V. D.O. PLAZA ENTERPRISES INC.


GR NO. L-28297
MARCH 30, 1970

Facts: This is a civil case of collection of sum of money worth P43, 017.32 representing balance
due on purchases of wire ropes, tractors and diesel parts made by the defendant. The complaint
prayed for the payment of the mentioned amount and for the issuance of writ of preliminary
attachment. Upon plaintiffs putting up a bond, the trial court issued a writ of preliminary
attachment. The defendant moved to discharge the attachment. The motion was denied. After
some year, the defendant moved for the dissolution of the preliminary attachment. Upon filing of
the proper bond, the court granted the same.

Issue: Whether or not a writ of preliminary attachment may be issued

Ruling: Although the defendant was found to be in bad faith in issuing two (2) sets of bouncing
checks in payment for its indebtedness, such bad faith was not related to his having incurred the
obligation in favour of the plaintiff but to defendant’s failure to perform said obligation. There
was, therefore, no ground for the plaintiff to attach the defendant’s properties on the ground of
fraud. That the plaintiff acted in good faith in securing attachment does not relieve him from the
damages that the defendant sustained by reason of the attachment because he, the plaintiff, was,
in the first place, not entitled to attachments, the element of malice was unnecessary.

MINDANAO SAVINGS AND LOAN ASSOCIATION, INC. VS. CA


GR NO. 84481
APRIL 18, 1989

Facts: Private respondents filed in the RTC Davao, a complaint against DS Homes, Inc. and its
directors for Rescission of Contract and Damages with a prayer for the issuance of a writ of
preliminary attachment. Judge Dinopol granted the application. Thereafter, private respondent
amended their complaint impleading petitioner, Davao Savings & Loan Association, Inc. and its
president. Judge Dinopol issued ex parte an amended order of attachment against all defendants
named in the amended complaint. DS Homes Inc and the Davao Savings & Loan Association
filed separate motions to quash the writ of attachment. Motion was denied. DS Homes offered a
counter-bond which was accepted by the court. Writ of Preliminary Attachment was then lifted.
MSLA and Villamoor then filed a petition for certiorari to annul the order of attachment and the
denial of their motion to quash the same. CA dismissed the petition.

Issue: Whether or not the defendant, after procuring the dissolution of the attachment by filing a
counterbond, ask for the cancellation of the counterbond on the ground that it was improperly
laid

Ruling: The CA did not err in holding that objections to the propriety or irregularity of the writ
of attachment “may no longer be invoked once a counterbond is filed,” when the grounds for the
issuance of the writ forms the core of the complaint. Indeed, after the defendants has obtained the
discharge of the writ of attachment by filing a counterbond under Section12, Rule 57 of the
Rules of Court, he may not file another motion under Section 13, Rule 57 to quash the writ of
preliminary or irregularity in issuing it. The reason is simple. The writ had already been quashed
by filing a counterbond, hence, another motion to quash it would be pointless. Moreover, as the
CA correctly observed, when the ground for the issuance of the writ is also the core of the
complaint, the question of whether the plaintiff was entitled to the writ can only be determined
after, not before, a full blown trial on the merits of the case. This accords with our ruling that “
“The merits of a main action are not triable in a motion to discharge an attachment, otherwise an
applicant for the dissolution could force a trial on the merits of the case on this motion.

SOFIA TORRES VS. NICANOR SATSATING


GR NO. 166759
NOVEMBER 25, 2009

Facts: The Torres siblings own a track of land situated in Dasmarinas, Cavite. Solar purchased
the property of the petitioner, through Nicanor for 35,000,000.00. Petitioners alleged that
Nicanor did not remit the total amount and only remitted 9,000,000.00. Petitioners filed before
the RTC a complaint for sum of money and damages. Petitioners filed an Ex Parte Motion for the
Issuance of a Writ of Attachment. Upon posting of a bond, the motion was granted. On
November 19, 2002, a copy of the writ of attachment was served upon the respondents. On the
same date, the sheriff levied the real and personal properties of the respondent. On November 21,
2002, summons, together with the copy of the complaint was served upon the respondents.
Respondents filed a Motion to Discharge Writ of Attachment.

Issue: Whether or not the writ of preliminary attachment is properly issued

Ruling: In Cuartero vs. CA, this Court held that the grant of the provisional remedy of
attachment involves three stages: first, the court issues the order granting the application; second,
the writ of attachment issues pursuant to the order granting the writ; and third, the writ is
implemented. For the initial two stages, it is not necessary that jurisdiction over the person of the
defendant be first obtained. However, once the implementation of the writ commences, the court
must have acquired jurisdiction over the defendant, for without such jurisdiction, the court has no
authority to act in any manner against the defendant.

At the time the trial court issued the writ of preliminary attachment on November 15,
2002. It can validly do so since the motion for its issuance can be filed at the commencement of
the action or any time before entry of judgment. However, at the time the writ was implemented,
the trial court has not acquired jurisdiction over the persons of the respondent since no summons
was yet served upon them. The proper officer should have previously or simultaneously with the
implementation of the writ of attachment, served a copy of the summons upon the respondents in
order for the trial court to have acquired jurisdiction upon them and for the writ to have binding
effect. Consequently, even if the writ of attachment was validly issued, it was improperly or
irregularly enforced and, therefore, cannot bind and affect the respondents.

DAVAO LIGHT AND POWER CO., INC. VS. CA


GR NO. 93262
DECEMBER 29, 1991

Facts: The Davao Light and Power Co., Inc. ("Davao Light") filed a collection suit against
Queensland Hotel ("Queensland") and Teodorico Adarna ("Adarna") with an ex parte application
for a writ of preliminary attachment. On 3 May 1989, the trial court issued an Order of
Attachment, and the corresponding Writ of Attachment on 11 May 1989. On 12 May 1989, the
summons, a copy of the complaint, and the writ of attachment was served upon Queensland and
Adarna. Queensland and Adarna filed a motion to discharge the attachment on the ground that at
the time the Order of Attachment and Writ of Attachment were issued, the trial court has yet to
acquire jurisdiction over the cause of action and over the persons of the defendants.

Issue: Whether or not the writ of preliminary attachment was validly issued.

Ruling: The court may validly issue a writ of preliminary injunction prior to the acquisition
of jurisdiction over the person of the defendant. There is an appreciable period of time between
the commencement of the action (takes place upon the filing of an initiatory pleading) and the
service of summons to the defendant. In the meanwhile, there are a number of actions which the
plaintiff or the court may validly take, including the application for and grant of the provisional
remedy of preliminary attachment. There is nothing in the law which prohibits the court from
granting the remedy prior to the acquisition of jurisdiction over the person of the defendant. In
fact, Rule 57 of the Rules of Court allows the granting of a writ of preliminary injunction at the
commencement of the suit. In the cases of Toledo v. Burgos and Filinvest Credit Corporation v.
Relova, it was held that notice and hearing are not prerequisites to the issuance of a writ of
preliminary attachment. Further, in the case of Mindanao Savings & Loan Association, Inc. v.
Court of Appeals, it was ruled that giving notice to the defendant would defeat the purpose of the
remedy by affording him or her the opportunity to dispose of his properties before the writ can
be issued.
A preliminary attachment may be discharged with the same ease as obtaining it. In any
case, the ease of availing the provisional remedy of preliminary attachment is matched by the
ease with which it can be remedied by either the posting of a counter-bond, or by a showing of
its improper or irregular issuance. The second means of defeating a preliminary attachment,
however, may not be availed of if the writ was issued upon a ground which is at the same time
the applicant's cause of action.

Preliminary attachment not binding until jurisdiction over the person of the defendant is
acquired. The writ of preliminary attachment, however, even though validly issued, is not
binding upon the defendant until jurisdiction over his person is first acquired.

TAYAG VS. LACSON


GR NO. 134971
MARCH 25, 2004

Facts: The Lacsons own lands in Pampanga. The properties were tenanted agricultural land
which were tenanted by the farmers. The farmers executed a Deed of Assignment in favor of
Petitioner. Petitioner then asked to meet up with the farmers to finalize their deal. However, the
farmers did not show up. Instead, they sent a letter to petitioners. In the letter, they said that they
will not sell the land to Mr. Tayag. Instead, they will sell the land to the Lacsons. Petitioner filed
a complaint with a prayer to issue a writ of preliminary injunction. Respondent filed a Motion to
Dismiss. RTC denied the MTD, issued the preliminary injunction.

Issue: Whether or not the issuance of the preliminary injunction was proper.

HELD: No. For the court to issue a writ of preliminary injunction, the ff. req. must be satisfied:
1. There must be a clear and unmistakable right;
2. A violation of such right;
3. There is an urgent necessity for the writ in order to prevent serious damage.

In the case at bar, petitioners have no clear legal right. The respondents are the owners of
the land. Thus, they cannot be enjoined from encumbering/alienating their own property. As
registered owners of the lands, they can do whatever they want with it except in cases stated in
the law. The deed of assignment will not bind the respondents because the farmers are not the
owners; The respondents were not privy to the deed of assignment; Petitioner testified, that he
did not meet/know any of the respondents prior to the filing of the complaint. In fact, based on
the face of the complaint, petitioner has no cause of action. Based on the deed of assignment, the
lands will be sold only when “there are no legal impediments existing.” There is no showing that
respondents agreed to the sale or the approval of the DAR have been obtained.

VALLANGCA VS. CA
173 SCRA 42
MAY 4, 1989

Facts: Upon the death of Fortunato Vallangca, his widow Ana Billena mortgaged the land to
Nazario Rabanes for 800, 000 in Japanese war notes. At the time of the mortgage, the land was
already mortgaged to the PNB. In 1946, Billena was informed that the document she signed was
a deed of absolute sale. On July 7, 1971, Rabanes filed an Injunction suit before the CFI of
Cagayan. The action was dismissed. On a second action of recovery of possession, the CFI
declared the plaintiff as the rightful owner of the land and ordered the defendant to vacate the
same.

Issue: Whether or not the defense of res judicata is unavailing to the petitioners

Ruling: The defense of res judicata was unavailing to the petitioners, because the prior
injunction suit against them, which was dismissed, was merely an ancillary and not a main
action. Sections 1 &3 , Rule 58 of the Rules of Court, provide: “Section 1. Preliminary
Injunction defined; classes – A preliminary injunction is an order granted at any stage of an
action prior to the final judgement, Section 3. Grounds for issuance of preliminary injunction – A
preliminary injunction may be granted at any time after the commencement of the action and
before judgement, when it is established:” From the above provisions, it can be clearly deduced
that a writ of injunction presupposes the pendency of a principal or main action. There being no
main action when the 7 July 1971 suit for injunction was filed, the latter was correctly dismissed.
Accordingly, there could be no prior judgement on the merits to speak of the resulted in res
judicata, from such dismissal of the injunction suit on September 13, 1972.

CALO VS. ROLDAN


GR NO L-252
MARCH 30, 1946

Facts: Regino Relova and Teodula Bartolome filed a complaint against Tranquilino Calo and
Doroteo San Jose for conniving with each other to enter and work or harvest existing fruits may
be found in the lands allegedly owned and possessed by the plaintiffs. The plaintiffs prayed for
the issuance of the preliminary injunction The defendants opposed the WOPI on the ground that
they are owners of the lands and have been in actual possession thereof since 1925. The CFI
Judge denied the petition for the WOPI on the ground that the defendants were in actual
possession of said lands. MR was filed but was not decided by the CFI. Plaintiffs then filed an
urgent petition ex-parte praying that the MR of the order denying their petition for WOPI be
granted and/or for the appointment of the receiver of the properties.
Issue: Whether or not it is proper for the plaintiffs to apply and be granted of the preliminary
attachment

Ruling: A property subject of litigation between the parties, or claimed by plaintiff as his, cannot
be attached upon motion of the same plaintiff. The special remedy of preliminary prohibitory
injunction (PPI) lies when the plaintiff’s principal action is an ordinary action of injunction, that
is when the relief demanded in the complaint consists in restraining the commission or
continuance of the act complained of, either perpetually or for a limited period, or other
conditions required by Section 3 of Rule 60 are present.

If no PPI were issued, the defendant may, before final judgment, do or continue the doing
of the act which the plaintiff asks the court to restrain, thus make ineffectual the final judgment
granting the relief sought by the plaintiff. But, a WOPI should not be granted to take the property
out of the possession of one party to place it in the hands of another whose title has not been
clearly established. From the foregoing it appears evident that the respondent judge acted in
excess of his jurisdiction in appointing a receiver. The litigation or issue raised by plaintiffs in
their complaint is not the ownership or possession of the lands and their fruits. It is whether or
not defendants intend or were intending to enter or work or harvest whatever existing fruits could
then be found in the lands described in the complaint, alleged to be the exclusive property and in
the actual possession of the plaintiffs. It is a matter not only of law but of plain common sense
that a plaintiff will not and legally cannot ask for the appointment or receiver of property which
he alleges to belong to him and to be actually in his possession.

V. POST JUDGEMENT REMEDIES

METROPOLITAN BANK TRUST CO. VS. CA


GR NO. 110147
APRIL 17, 2001

Facts: Petitioner Metrobank and Trust Company brought an action for a sum of money against
private respondents Pacific Multi Commercial Corporation. Private respondents failed to file
their answer and was declared in default. The TC rendered judgement in favour of Metrobank.
Metrobank moved for the execution of the judgement in its favour. TC granted the motion.
Respondent filed a motion to hold abeyance the delivery of certificate of ownership. The motion
was denied. CA ruled that a defendant may appeal a judgement of default without need to set
aside the order declaring him in default.

Issue: Whether or not the CA erred in sustaining the trial court’s Orders allowing private
respondent’s appeal

Ruling: A party in default is not precluded from filing an appeal, as provided in Section 2, Rule
41 of the pre-1997 Rules of Court. It states that one who has been declared in default may
appeal, without need of an order lifting the default. Hence, the mere fact that the trial court has
not lifted its default order does not bar herein respondent from filing an appeal.
In the present case, the April 10, 1992 Order denied private respondent’s Motion to hold
in abeyance the delivery of the Certificate of Sale of his Club Filipino share and to declare the
sale void. After rendering the Order, the trial court did not need to do anything more to settle the
rights of the parties. Upon the affirmation of the validity of the sale, the Certificate of Sale was to
be delivered to petitioner as the new owner. Indeed, while appeal does not lie against the
execution of a judgement, it is available in case of an irregular implementation of a writ of
execution.

GALLARDO VS. PEOPLE


GR NO. 142030
APRIL 21, 2005

Facts: Atty. Victor dela Serna filed a sworn letter-complaint with the Office of the Ombudsman
Mindanao in behalf of the Public health workers of Bansalan, Davao Del-Sur charging the
petitioners with violation of Section 3 of RA 3019 for the alleged refusal to appropriate
municipal budget. Office of the Ombudsman found probable cause on the complaint. Information
was filed with the Sandiganbayan. A resolution was issued by the Sandiganbayan recommending
the dismissal of the case which was likewise approved. Petitioners filed a motion to quash the
information. Ombudsman denied the motion.

Issue: Whether or not appeal under Rule 45 is the proper remedy in the case

Ruling: Rule 45 of the Rules of Court governs appealed from the judgement or final orders. A
final order is one which disposes of the whole subject matter or terminates a particular
proceedings or action, leaving nothing to be done but to enforce by execution what has been
determined. The resolution of the Sandiganbayan sought to be reviewed or set aside is not in any
sense judgement or a final order, nut an interlocutory order. An order is interlocutory if it does
not dispose of a case completely, but leaves something more to be done on its merits. The order
of the Sandiganbayan denying the motion to quash filed by petitioners is interlocutory in nature
because it leaves something more to be done by the Sandiganbayan, by way of resolving the case
on the merits. The denial of petitioners’ motion to quash allows the same petitioners to enter a
plea, go to trial without prejudice on their part to present the special defences they invoked in
their motion and if, after trial on the merits, an adverse decision is rendered, to appeal therefrom
via appeal by certiorari.

PROVINCE OF PANGASINAN VS. CA


GR NO. 104266
MARCH 31, 1993

Facts: Rogelio Coquial filed a complaint against the petitioners for entering a contract for the
improvement of Urdaneta-Mapandan Road and not having to finished the said contract. Private
respondent filed a motion for partial summary judgement. The TC granted the motion. The TC
denied due dourse to the notice of appeal on the ground that it should have been filed not later
than May 11, 1991 and pursuant to Rule 36 of the ROC. A writ of execution was issued.
Petitioners then filed a petition for certiorari to nullify the TC’s Order. Respondent Court denied
the petition.
Issue: Whether or not a partial summary judgement is governed by Rule 36 of the ROC

Ruling: A partial summary of judgement is merely interlocutory and not a final judgement. Its
nature is specifically provided for in Section 4 of Rule 34 of the Rules of Court. What Rule 34
contemplates is that the appeal from the partial summary judgement shall be taken together with
the judgements that may be rendered in the entire case after a trial is conducted on the material
facts on which a substantial controversy exists. The trial court and the respondent court
erroneously relied on Section 5 of Rule 35 of the Rules of Court, which pertains to judgements in
general.

ST. MARTIN FUNERAL HOME VS. NLRC


295 SCRA 494

Facts: Private respondent alleges that he is working as Operations manager of petitioner St.
Martin Funeral Home On January 22, 1996, he was dismissed from his employment for allegedly
misappropriating P38,000.00. Petitioner on the other hand claims that private respondent was not
its employee but only the uncle of Amelita Malabed, the owner of St.Martin’s Funeral Home. As
a consequence, the latter filed a complaint charging that petitioner had illegally terminated his
employment. The labor arbiter rendered a decision in favor of petitioner declaring that no
employer-employee relationship.

Issue: Whether or not the decision of the NLRC are appealable to the Court of Appeals

Ruling: The Court is of the considered opinion that ever since appeals from the NLRC to the SC
were eliminated, the legislative intendment was that the special civil action for certiorari was and
still is the proper vehicle for judicial review of decisions of the NLRC. The use of the
word appeal in relation thereto and in the instances we have noted could have been
a lapsus plumae because appeals by certiorari and the original action for certiorari are both
modes of judicial review addressed to the appellate courts. The important distinction between
them, however, and with which the Court is particularly concerned here is that the special civil
action for certiorari is within the concurrent original jurisdiction of this Court and the Court of
Appeals; whereas to indulge in the assumption that appeals by certiorari to the SC are allowed
would not subserve, but would subvert, the intention of the Congress as expressed in the
sponsorship speech on Senate Bill No. 1495. Therefore, all references in the amended Section 9
of B.P No. 129 to supposed appeals from the NLRC to the Supreme Court are interpreted and
hereby declared to mean and refer to petitions for certiorari under Rule 65. Consequently, all
such petitions should henceforth be initially filed in the Court of Appeals in strict observance of
the doctrine on the hierarchy of courts as the appropriate forum for the relief desired.

NEYPES ET. AL. VS CA


GR NO. 121524
SEPTEMBER14, 2005
Facts: Neypes filed an action for annulment of judgment and titles of land and/or reconveyance
and/or reversion with preliminary injunction before the RTC against the private respondents.
Later, in an order, the trial court dismissed petitioners’ complaint on the ground that the action
had already prescribed. Petitioners allegedly received a copy of the order of dismissal and, on the
15th day thereafter filed a motion for reconsideration. On July 1, 1998, the trial court issued
another order dismissing the motion for reconsideration which petitioners received on July 22,
1998. Five days later, on July 27, 1998, petitioners filed a notice of appeal and paid the appeal
fees on August 3, 1998. The court a quo denied the notice of appeal, holding that it was filed
eight days late. This was received by petitioners on July 31, 1998. Petitioners filed a motion for
reconsideration but this too was denied in an order dated September 3, 1998. Via a petition for
certiorari and mandamus under Rule 65, petitioners assailed the dismissal of the notice of appeal
before the CA.

In the appellate court, petitioners claimed that they had seasonably filed their notice of
appeal. They argued that the 15-day reglementary period to appeal started to run only on July 22,
1998 since this was the day they received the final order of the trial court denying their motion
for reconsideration. When they filed their notice of appeal on July 27, 1998, only five days had
elapsed and they were well within the reglementary period for appeal. On September 16, 1999,
the CA dismissed the petition. It ruled that the 15-day period to appeal should have been
reckoned from March 3, 1998 or the day they received the February 12, 1998 order dismissing
their complaint. According to the appellate court, the order was the “final order” appealable
under the Rules.

Issue: Whether or not it is proper to allow a fresh period to file an appeal in lieu of dismissal of
the Motion for Reconsideration

Ruling: To standardize the appeal periods provided in the Rules and to afford litigants fair
opportunity to appeal their cases, the Court deems it practical to allow a fresh period of 15 days
within which to file the notice of appeal in the RTC, counted from receipt of the order dismissing
a motion for a new trial or motion for reconsideration. Henceforth, this “fresh period rule” shall
also apply to Rule 40, Rule 42, Rule 43 and Rule 45. The new rule aims to regiment or make the
appeal period uniform, to be counted from receipt of the order denying the motion for new trial,
motion for reconsideration (whether full or partial) or any final order or resolution. The SC thus
held that petitioners seasonably filed their notice of appeal within the fresh period of 15 days,
counted from July 22, 1998 (the date of receipt of notice denying their motion for
reconsideration). This pronouncement is not inconsistent with Rule 41, Section 3 of the Rules,
which states that the appeal shall be taken within 15 days from notice of judgment or final order
appealed from. The use of the disjunctive word “or” signifies disassociation and independence of
one thing from another. It should, as a rule, be construed in the sense in which it ordinarily
implies.

Hence, the use of “or” in the above provision supposes that the notice of appeal may be
filed within 15 days from the notice of judgment or within 15 days from notice of the “final
order,” which we already determined to refer to the July 1, 1998 order denying the motion for a
new trial or reconsideration. Neither does this new rule run counter to the spirit of Section 39 of
BP 129 which shortened the appeal period from 30 days to 15 days to hasten the disposition of
cases. The original period of appeal (in this case March 3-18, 1998) remains and the requirement
for strict compliance still applies. The fresh period of 15 days becomes significant only when a
party opts to file a motion for new trial or motion for reconsideration. In this manner, the trial
court that rendered the assailed decision is given another opportunity to review the case and, in
the process, minimize and/or rectify any error of judgment. While we aim to resolve cases with
dispatch and to have judgments of courts become final at some definite time, we likewise aspire
to deliver justice fairly.

PACIFIC LIFE ASSURANCE CORPORATION VS. SISON


GR NO. 122839
NOVEMBER 20, 1998

Facts: RTC of Manila issued judgement in Civil Case No. 86-38526 in favour of private
respondents ordering petitioner to pay actual and moral damages. Pacific Life filed a notice of
appeal. On the other hand, private respondents filed a motion for reconsideration to which the
Court granted. While the appeal was pending, private respondents filed a motion for execution of
the decision. Petitioner elevated the matter to the CA through a special civil action for certiorari
and succeeded in having the writ of execution annulled. On the other hand, private respondent
moved to dismiss the appeal of petitioner on the ground that the latter had not appealed from the
decision dated March 11, 1993.

Issue: Whether or not the appeal should be dismissed

Ruling: The conclusion of the CA would have been proper had the order of March 11, 1993
reduced petitioner’s liability or had petitioner not taken a prior appeal. But since the decision as
modified substantially increased petitioner’s liability, the logical inference is that petitioner
would all the more want to appeal from the decision as modified. To deny petitioner’s appeal on
the sole ground that it failed to file another notice of appeal in order to signify its objection to the
modified decision would be to put a premium on technicalities at the expense of a just resolution
of a case.

An appeal should not be dismissed on a mere technicality. All litigants must be afforded
the fullest opportunity for the adjudication of their cases on the merits. As we state in A-One
Feeds, Inc. vs. CA, Dismissal of appeals purely on technical grounds is frowned upon and the
rules of procedure ought not to be applied in a very rigid, technical sense, for they are adopted to
help secure, not override, substantial justice, and thereby defeat their very aims.

MAGESTRADO VS. PEOPLE


GR NO. 148072
JULY 7, 2007

Facts: Private respondent Elena M. Librojo filed a criminal complaint for perjury against
petitioner with the Office of the City Prosecutor of Quezon City. Petitioner filed a motion for
suspension of proceedings based on a prejudicial question alleged that a civil case for recovery
of a sum of money pending before the RTC QC, a case for Cancellation of Mortgage, Delivery
of Title and Damages must be resolved first before the present Criminal Case may proceed.
MeTC-Branch 43 denied motion without merit. MR was filed by petitioner which was denied by
the MeTC. Petitioner filed a Petition for Certiorari under Rule 65 of the Revised Rules of Court,
with a prayer for Issuance of a Writ of Preliminary Injunction before the RTC of QC.

Issue: Whether or not the instant Petition for Certiorari under Rule 65 is the correct and
appropriate remedy.

Ruling: Certiorari generally lies only when there is no appeal nor any other plain, speedy or
adequate remedy available to petitioners. Here, appeal was available. It was adequate to deal
with any question whether of fact or of law, whether of error of jurisdiction or grave abuse of
discretion or error of judgment which the trial court might have committed. Certiorari cannot be
allowed when a party to a case fails to appeal a judgment despite the availability of that remedy,
certiorari not being a substitute for lost appeal perfection of appeals in the manner and within the
period permitted by law is not only mandatory but jurisdictional, and that the failure to perfect an
appeal renders the decision of the trial court final and executor this is founded upon the principle
that the right to appeal is not part of due process of law but is a mere statutory privilege to be
exercised only in the manner and in accordance with the provisions of the law. Neither can
petitioner invoke the doctrine that rules of technicality must yield to the broader interest of
substantial justice.

UY VS. SANTIAGO
GR NO. 131237
JULY 31, 2000

Facts: MeTC and RTC decided in favor of petitioners in an action filed by them. Petitioners
filed a Motion for Issuance of Writ of Execution Pending Appeal, to which private respondent
filed their Opposition. Meanwhile, private respondents filed a Petition for Review with the CA
assailing the Decision of respondent Judge in the ejectment cases.

ISSUE: Whether or not decisions of Regional Trial Courts in appealed ejectment cases pending
appeal with the CA are immediately executory and cannot be stayed

HELD: YES. Northcastle Properties & Estate Corp. v. Judge Paas: It is the ministerial duty of
the Regional Trial Court, as appellate court, to immediately execute its decision. Such
interpretation is consistent with the summary nature of ejectment proceedings. Only execution of
the Metropolitan or Municipal Trial Courts’ judgment pending appeal with the Regional Trial
Court which may be stayed by a compliance with the requisites provided on Section 21 - only to
those decided by the RTC. Once the RTC has rendered a decision in its appellate jurisdiction,
such decision shall be immediately executory, without prejudice to an appeal, via a Petition for
Review, before the Court of Appeals and/or Supreme Court. The pre sent wording of Section 21,
Rule 70 of the Revised Rules of Civil Procedure explicitly provides that the judgment of the
regional trial court in ejectment cases appealed to it shall be immediately executory and can be
enforced despite the perfection of an appeal to a higher court.

GOLEZ VS. LEONIDAS


GR NO. L-56587
AUGUST 31, 1981

Facts: Petitioners filed an ejectment case against private respondent. Judge Tolentino rendered a
decision by default against private respondent who thereafter filed petition for relief. A writ of
preliminary injunction was issued to stay the execution of the decision rendered by petitioner.
After hearing, respondent dismissed the case. After receipt of the decision, petitioner was granted
motion for execution pending appeal. Petitioner filed for petition for contempt which was
thereafter denied.

Issue: Whether or not the writ of preliminary injunction was lifted upon dismissal of the petition
for relief from judgement

Ruling: When respondent Judge Leonidas dismissed the petition for relief from judgement such
dismissal necessarily carried with it the lifting of the writ of preliminary injunction he issued
upon the filing of the petition for relief from judgement, said writ being interlocutory and
ancillary in character which is automatically lifted upon dismissal of the main case.

ALEBAN VS. CA
GR NO. 156021
SEPTEMBER 23, 2005

Facts: Respondent Francisco Provido filed a petition for the probate of the Last Will and
Testament of the late Soledad Provido Elevencionado who died on Oct. 26, 2000 in Janjuay,
Iloilo. The RTC allowed the probate of the will of the decedent and directed the issuance of
letters testamentary to respondent. More than 4 months later or on Oct. 4, 2001, petitioners filed
a motion for reopening of the probate proceedings. Likewise, they filed an opposition to the
allowance of the will of the decedent. Petitioners thereafter filed a petition with an application
for preliminary injunction with the CA, seeking the annulment of the RTC’s Decision and Order.
They argued that the RTC decision should be annulled and set aside on the ground of extrinsic
fraud and lack of jurisdiction on the part of the RTC. Petitioner sought reconsideration but the
same was denied.

Issue: Whether or not the proceedings in the RTC was attended by extrinsic fraud that
necessitates the annulment of the RTC’s judgment.

Ruling: Petition is devoid of merit. An action to annul a final judgment on the ground of fraud
only lies if the fraud is extrinsic or collateral in character. Fraud is regarded as extrinsic where it
prevents a party from having a trial or from presenting his entire case to the court, or where it
operates upon matters pertaining not to the judgment itself but to the manner in which it is
procured. The overriding consideration when extrinsic is alleged is that the fraudulent scheme of
the prevailing litigant prevented a party from having his day in court.

According to the Rules, notice is required to be personally given to known heirs, legatees,
and devisees of the testator. A perusal of the will shows that respondent was instituted as the sole
heir of the decedent. Petitioners, as nephews and nieces of the decedent, are neither compulsory
nor testate heirs who are entitled to be notified of the probate proceedings under the Rules.
Respondent had no legal obligation to mention petitioners in the petition for probate, or to
personally notify them of the same. Besides, assuming arguendo that petitioners are entitled to be
so notified, the purported infirmity is cured by the publication of the notice. After all, personal
notice upon the heirs is a matter of procedural convenience and not a jurisdictional requisite.

The non-inclusion of petitioners’ names in the petition and alleged failure to personally
notify them of the proceedings do not constitute extrinsic fraud. Petitioners were not denied their
day in court, as they were not prevented from participating in the proceedings and presenting
their case before the probate court.

VI. EXECUTION, SATISFACTION AND EFFECT OF JUDGEMENTS

RCPI VS. LANTIN


GR NO. L-59311
JANUARY 31, 1985

Facts: The case of Lantin was an action for damages. The court awarded the plaintiff said
damages. So, the plaintiff moved for discretionary execution.

Issue: Whether or not execution pending appeal is proper in a judgment for damages

Ruling: The execution pending appeal may be proper for enforcing the collection of actual
damages, but it is not proper to enforce the payment of moral or exemplary damages. So, this
is where the SC distinguished. Why is it that execution pending appeal is proper for the
collection of actual damages? In actual or compensatory damages, the amount is certain.
Normally, there are receipts. The amount is based on evidence. But the award for moral or
exemplary damages is uncertain and indefinite. It is based on abstract factors like sleepless
nights, besmirched reputation. It is hard to quantify it based on evidence. The SC said, in
many cases the trial court awards a huge amount for exemplary damages but on appeal, the
CA refused to award or totally eliminate the award. So, if the award of moral or exemplary
damages is not certain or fixed, the execution pending appeal may not be proper to enforce
its execution.

INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL, INC. VS. CA


GR NO. 131109
JUNE 29, 1999
Facts: RTC of Quezon City rendered a decision in a Complaint for Damages finding the
petitioner liable to the plaintiffs. On appeal, Sps. Torralba filed a motion for execution of
judgement pending appeal on the grounds that the appeal is merely dilatory and the filing of a
bond is another good reason for the execution of a judgement pending appeal.

Issue: Whether or not the CA erred in dismissing the petition for certiorari

Ruling: A petition for certiorari lies against an order granting execution pending appeal where
the same is not founded upon good reasons. The mere filing of a bond by the successful party is
not a good reasons for ordering execution pending appeal, as a “combination of circumstances is
the dominant consideration which impels the grant of immediate execution, the requirement of a
bond is imposed merely as an additional factor, no doubt for the protection of the defendant’s
creditor” Since we have already ruled that the reason that an appeal is dilatory does not justify
execution pending appeal, neither does not filing of a bond, without anything more, justify the
same.

DE GUZMAN VS. COURT OF APPEALS


GR NO. 120941
APRIL 18, 1997

Facts: An ejectment case was filed by private respondents Isagani and Ignacio Raneses against
petitioner before the MTC of San Mateo, Rizal. Despite continuous demands, petitioner refused
to vacate the premises. MTC issued Writ of Execution. Petitioner filed with the RTC a Petition
for Relief from judgement, Injunction, and Damages. RTC ruled RTC granted the petition.
Petitioner filed a Petition for Certiorari

Issue: Whether or not the Petition shall be granted

Ruling: It is clear that petitioner was denied due process as she was not properly summoned
before the MTC rendered judgement against her. It is also indubitable on the face of the
Complaint for forcible entry that the action had already prescribed. The complaint alleged that
petitioner entered that property by stealth. We have ruled that forcible entry and unlawful
detainer are quieting processes and the one-year time bar to the suit is in pursuance of the
summary nature of the action. The one-year period is counted from the time the entry by stealth
was made by the defendant. After the lapse of the one-year period, the remedy of the party
dispossessed of a land is to file an accion publiciana. Consequently, the respondent court
committed reversible error when it sustained the ruling of the RTC upholding the claim of
ownership of the private respondents.

VII. SPECIAL CIVIL ACTION

FORTICH VS. CORONA


GR NO. 131457
APRIL 24, 1998
Facts: In 1984, a land was leased as a pineapple plantation to the Philippine Packing
Corporation, now Del Monte Philippines, Inc. (DMPI) for a period of ten (10) years under the
Crop Producer and Growers Agreement duly annotated in the certificate of title. During the
existence of the lease, the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) placed the entire 144-hectare
property under compulsory acquisition and assessed the land value at P2.38 million. When
NQSRMDC was about to transfer the title over the 4-hectare donated to DECS, it discovered that
the title over the subject property was no longer in its name. NQSRMDC filed a complaint for
annulment and cancellation of title, damages and injunction against DAR and 141 others. The
RTC then issued a Temporary Restraining Order and a Writ of Preliminary Injunction.
Meanwhile, an Order was issued by then Executive Secretary Ruben D. Torres denying DARs
motion for reconsideration for having been filed beyond the reglementary period of fifteen (15)
days. The said order further declared that the March 29, 1996 OP decision had already
become final and executory.

Issue: Whether or not the proper remedy of petitioners should have been to file a petition for
review directly with the Court of Appeals in accordance with Rule 43 of the Revised Rules of
Court;

Ruling: In order to determine whether the recourse of petitioners is proper or not, it is necessary
to draw a line between an error of judgment and an error of jurisdiction. An error of judgment is
one which the court may commit in the exercise of its jurisdiction, and which error is reviewable
only by an appeal. On the other hand, an error of jurisdiction is one where the act complained of
was issued by the court, officer or a quasi-judicial body without or in excess of jurisdiction,
or with grave abuse of discretion which is tantamount to lack or in excess of jurisdiction. This
error is correctable only by the extraordinary writ of certiorari.

It is true that under Rule 43, appeals from awards, judgments, final orders or resolutions
of any quasi-judicial agency exercising quasi-judicial functions, including the Office of the
President, may be taken to the Court of Appeals by filing a verified petition for review within
fifteen (15) days from notice of the said judgment, final order or resolution, whether the appeal
involves questions of fact, of law, or mixed questions of fact and law.

However, in this particular case, the remedy prescribed in Rule 43 is inapplicable


considering that the present petition contains an allegation that the challenged resolution is
patently illegal and was issued with grave abuse of discretion and beyond his (respondent
Secretary Renato C. Coronas) jurisdiction when said resolution substantially modified the earlier
OP Decision of March 29, 1996 which had long become final and executory. In other words, the
crucial issue raised here involves an error of jurisdiction, not an error of judgment which is
reviewable by an appeal under Rule 43. Thus, the appropriate remedy to annul and set aside the
assailed resolution is an original special civil action for certiorari under Rule 65, as what the
petitioners have correctly done.

ARTISTICA CERAMICA INC VS. CIUDAD DEL CARMEN HOMEOWNER’S


ASSOCIATON, INC.
GR NOS. 167583-84
JUNE 16, 2010

Facts: Respondents sent letter complaints to various government agencies complaining of


petitioner’s activities alleging noise, air and water pollution. Petitioners entered into a Drainage
Memorandum of Agreements and another MOA date June 29, 2997 and November 14,
respectively. Respondents file with the Arbitration Committee a Complaint alleging the failure of
petitioners to comply with the terms of the agreement. Respondents filed an MR. Petitioners and
respondents separately filed a petition for review before the CA.

Issue: What is the proper action or remedy that should be filed

Ruling: While petitioners would insists that the CA committed grave abuse of discretion, this
Court is of the opinion, however, that the assailed Decision and Resolution of the CA, granting
the forfeiture of the performance bond among others, amount to nothing more than errors of
judgement, correctible by appeal. When a court, tribunal, or officer has jurisdiction over the
person and the subject matter of the dispute, the decision on all other questions arising in the case
is an exercise of that jurisdiction. Consequently, all error committed in the exercise of said
jurisdiction are merely errors of judgement. Under prevailing procedural rules and jurisprudence,
errors of judgement are not proper subjects of special civil action for certiorari. If every error
committed by the trial court or quasi-judicial agency were to be the proper subject of a special
civil action for certiorari, then trial would never end and the dockets of appellate courts would be
clogged beyond measure. For this reason, where the issue or question involved affects the
wisdom or legal soundness of the decision, not the jurisdiction of the court to render said
decision, the same is beyond the province of a special civil action for certiorari, instead of appeal
via a petition for review.

ST. MARTIN’S FUNERAL HOMES VS. NLRC


GR NO. 10866
SEPTEMBER 16, 1998

Facts: Respondent was summarily dismissed by St. Martin Funeral Homes for misappropriating
funds worth Php 38,000 which was supposed to be taxes paid to the Bureau of Internal Revenue
(BIR). Alleging that the dismissal was illegal, respondent filed a case against St. Martin Funeral
Homes in the National Labor Relations Commission (NLRC). The labor arbiter ruled in favor of
petitioner, confirming that indeed, there was no employer-employee relationship between the
two and hence, there could be no illegal dismissal in such a situation. The respondent appealed to
the secretary of NLRC who set aside the decision and remanded the case to the labor arbiter.
Petitioner filed a motion for reconsideration, but was denied by the NLRC. Now, petitioners
appealed to the Supreme Court – alleging that the NLRC committed grave abuse of discretion.

Issue: Whether or not the petitioner’s appeal/petition for certiorari was properly filed in the
Supreme Court.

Ruling: No. Historically, decisions from the NLRC were appealable to the Secretary of Labor,
whose decisions are then appealable to the Office of the President. However, the new rules do
not anymore provide provisions regarding appellate review for decisions rendered by the NLRC.
However in this case, the Supreme Court took it upon themselves to review such decisions from
the NLRC by virtue of their role under the check and balance system and the perceived intention
of the legislative body who enacted the new rules.

CEREZO VS. PEOPLE


GR NO. 185230
JUNE 1, 2011

Facts: Joseph C. Cerezo, the petitioner filed a complaint for libel against respondents Juliet
Yaneza, Pablo Abunda, Jr., Oscar Mapalo and Vicente Afulugencia. Finding probable cause, the
Prosecutor filed the corresponding information against them, but reversed its earlier finding
and recommended the withdrawal of information. Relying on the recommendation of the
prosecutor, the RTC ordered the criminal case dismissed on the ground that it is settled rule that
the determination of the persons to be prosecuted rests primarily with the Public Prosecutor who
is vested with quasi-judicial discretion in the discharge in the of this function. Being vested with
such power, he can reconsider his own resolution if he finds that there is reasonable ground to
do so. However, upon petitioner’s motion for reconsideration, the RTC granted the same and reinstated the case
after the DOJ Secretary reversed the resolution the prosecutor.

Issue: Whether there was a valid termination of the case so as to usher in the impregnable wall
of double jeopardy.

Ruling: The petition is impressed with merit. The rule is that once a case is filed with the court,
any disposition of it rests on the sound discretion of the court. Hence, resolving a motion to
dismiss a case or to withdraw an information, the trial court should not rely solely and merely on
the findings of the public prosecutor of the Secretary of Justice. To assess independently the merits of the
motion is the court’s bounden duty. Further, the assessment must be embodied in a written order
disposing of the motion. While the recommendation of the prosecutor or the ruling of the
Secretary of Justice is persuasive, it is not binding on court.

In this case, obviously the RTC judge failed to make his own determination, evaluation or
assessment of the merit of the case. He blindly relied on the manifestation and recommendation
of the prosecutor when he should have been more circumspect and judicious in resolving the
Motion to dismiss and Withdraw information especially so when the prosecution appeared to be
uncertain, undecided and irresolute on whether to indict respondent. Beyond the object, double
jeopardy did not set in. Double jeopardy exists when the following requisites are present: 1. A
first jeopardy attached prior to the second; 2. The first jeopardy has been validly terminated; and
3. A second jeopardy is for the same offense as in the first. A first jeopardy attaches only: a.)
after a valid indictment; b.) before a competent court; c.) after arraignment; d.) when a valid plea
has been entered; and e.) when the accused has been acquitted or convicted, or the
case dismissed or otherwise terminated without his express consent

GR NO. 176084
APRIL 30, 2008
Facts: Carino filed a complaint for violation of BP 22 against respondent. MTC declared that the
check was issued without valuable consideration and dismissed the complaint. On appeal, RTC
affirmed the decision of the MTC. Petitioner then filed a petition for review before the CA. The
petition was dismissed because it was filed only by the private prosecutor and not by the OSG.

Issue: Whether or not the lower courts erred in dismissing the complaint

Ruling: Only the OSG can bring or defend actions on behalf of the Republic ore represent the
People or state in criminal proceedings pending in the SC and the CA. At the same time, we
acknowledged in those cases that a private offended party, in the interest of substantial justice,
and where there appears to be a grave error committed by the judge, or where there is lack of due
process, may allow and give due course to the petition filed. However, the special circumstances
prevailing in the abovementioned cases are not present in the instant case. In those cases, the
petitioners availed of petition for certiorari under Rule 65. In the instant case, the petition was
filed under Rule 45. Moreover, both the Metropolitan Trial Court and the RTC found that
petitioner was not duly authorized by the owner of the subject property to collect and receive
rentals thereon. This, not only were the checks without valuable consideration; they were also
issued for a non-existing account. With these undisputed findings, we cannot reconcile
petitioner’s allegation that she is the aggrieved party.

AMPATUAN VS. DE LIMA


695 SCRA 159
APRIL 3, 2013

Facts: Petitioner is the principal suspect in the massacre of 57 innocent civilians in Maguindanao
province. Secretary Devanadera request the transfer of the venue to Manila. On October 14.
Petitioner wrote to Secretary De Lima requesting the inclusion of Dalandag in the informations
for murder. However, it was denied by the petitioner. Petitioner the brought a petition for
mandamus.

Issue: Whether or not respondents may be compelled by mandamus

Ruling: Mandamus shall issue when any tribunal, corporation, board or officer or person
unlawfully neglects the performance of an act that the law specifically enjoins as a duty resulting
from an office, trust, or station. It is proper when the act against which it is directed is one
addressed to the discretion of the tribunal or officer. In matters involving the exercise of
judgement and discretion, mandamus may only be resorted to in order to compel respondent
tribunal, corporation, board, officer or person to take action, bu it cannot be used to direct the
manner or the particular was discretion is to be exercised, or to compel the retraction or reversal
of an action already taken in the exercise of judgement or discretion. As such, respondent
Secretary Justice may be compelled to act on the letter-request of petitioner, but may be
compelled to act in a certain way, to grant or deny such letter-request. Considering that
respondent Secretary already denied the letter-request, mandamus was no longer available.
GARCES VS. CA
GR NO. 114795
JULY 17, 1996

Facts: Concepcion refused to transfer post in connection to his work as Election Registrar of
Gutalac, Zamboanga del Norte. Garces was directed by the Office of Assistant Director for
Operations to assume the Gutalac post. But she was not able to do so because of a Memorandum
issued by respondent Provincial Election Supervisor Empeynado that prohibited her from
assuming office in Gutalac as the same is not vacant. Since respondent Concepcion continued
occupying the Gutalac office, the COMELEC en banc cancelled his appointment to Liloy.
Garces filed before the RTC a petition for mandamus with preliminary prohibitory and
mandatory injunction and damages against Empeynado and Concepcion .

Issue: Whether or not petitioner’s action for mandamus is proper

Ruling: As correctly ruled by respondent court, mandamus, which petitioner filed below, will
not lie as this remedy applies only where petitioners right is founded clearly in law and not when
it is doubtful. It will not issue to give him something to which he is not clearly and conclusively
entitled. Considering that Concepcion continuously occupies the disputed position and exercises
the corresponding functions therefore, the proper remedy should have been quo warranto and not
mandamus. Quo warranto tests the title to one’s office claimed by another and has as its object
the ouster of the holder from its enjoyment, while mandamus avails to enforce clear legal duties
and not to try disputed titles.

COMELEC VS. QUIJANO-PADILLA


GR NO. 152992
SEPTEMBER 18, 2002

Facts: COMELEC issued invitations to pre-qualify and bid for the supply and installations of
information technology equipment and ancillary services for its VRIS Project. Private respondent
Photokina Marketing Corporation(PHOTOKINA) pre-qualified and was allowed to participate as
one of the bidders. However, under Republic Act No. 8760 the budget appropriated by Congress
for the COMELEC’s modernization project was only One (1) Billion Pesos and that the actual
available funds under the Certificate of Availability of Funds(CAF) issued by the Chief
Accountant of the COMELEC was only P1.2 Billion Pesos. PHOTOKINA, as the winning
bidder, wrote several letters to the COMELEC requesting the formal execution of the contract,
but to no avail, PHOTOKINA filed with the Regional Trial Court, Branch 215, Quezon City a
petition for mandamus , prohibition and damages.

Issue: Whether or not the petition for mandamus is the proper remedy

Ruling: No rule of law is better settled than that mandamus does not lie to enforce the
performance of contractual obligations. The writ of mandamus has never been considered as an
appropriate remedy for the enforcement of contract rights of a private and personal nature and
obligations which rest wholly upon contract and which involve no questions of public trusts
or official duty. It never lies where the party aggrieved has adequate remedy at law, and its aid is
only to be invoked to prevent an absolute failure of justice in cases where ordinary legal processes
furnish no relief.”

PHOTOKINA sought to enforce therein are its rights under the accepted bid proposal. Its
petition alleged that notwithstanding the COMELEC’s issuance of a Notice of Award and its
(PHOTOKINA’s) subsequent acceptance, the COMELEC still refused to formalize
the contract. As a relief, PHOTOKINA prayed that after trial, petitioners be directed “to
review and finalize the formal contract” and to “implement the VRIS Project. Petitioners,
on their part, specifically denied the existence of a perfected contract and asserted that even if
there was one, the same is null and void for lack of proper appropriation. Moreover, worth
stressing is the judicial caution that mandamus applies as a remedy only where petitioner's right
is founded clearly in law and not when it is doubtful. In varying language, the principle echoed
and re-echoed is that legal rights may be enforced by mandamus only of those rights are well-
defined clear and certain. Here, the alleged contract relied upon by PHOTOKINA as source of its
rights which it seeks to be protected is being disputed not only on the ground that it was not
perfected but also because it is illegal and against public policy.

PALOMA VS. MORA


GR NO. 157783
SEPTEMBER 23, 2005

Facts: Petitioner was terminated from his appointment as General Manager of the Palompon,
Leyte Water District. By reason thereof, petitioner filed a petition for mandamus with prayer to
be restored to his former position and for preliminary injunction with damages before the RTC.
Unable to obtain a favorable ruling with the RTC, petitioner filed a complaint with the Civil
Service Commission for alleged Violation of Civil Service Law and Rules and for Illegal
Dismissal. The CSC, however, dismissed the petition for lack of merit, which was likewise
affirmed by the Court of Appeals

Issue: Whether or not mandamus will lie to compel the Board of Directors of Palompon, Leyte
Water District to reinstate the General Manager

Ruling: No. Mandamus does not lie to compel the Board of Directors of the Palompon, Leyte
Water District to reinstate petitioner because the Board has the discretionary power to remove
him under Section 23 of P.D. No. 198, as amended by P.D. No. 768.

Moreover, Section 3, Rule 65 of the Rules of Court provides:“

Sec. 3. Petition for mandamus. ' When any tribunal, corporation, board, officer or person
unlawfully neglects the performance of an act which the law specifically enjoins as a duty
resulting from an office, trust, or station, or unlawfully excludes another from the use and
enjoyment of a right or office to which such other is entitled, and there is no other plain, speedy
and adequate remedy in the ordinary course of law, the person aggrieved thereby may file a
verified petition in the proper court, alleging the facts with certainty and praying that judgment
be rendered commanding the respondent, immediately or at some other time to be specified by the court,
to do the act required to be done to protect the rights of the petitioner and to pay the damages sustained by
the petitioner by reason of the wrongful acts of the respondent.”

Mandamus lies to compel the performance, when refused, of a ministerial duty, but not
to compel the performance of a discretionary duty. Mandamus will not issue to control or review
the exercise of discretion of a public officer where the law imposes upon said public officer the
right and duty to exercise his judgment in reference to any matter in which he is required to act.
It is his judgment that is to be exercised and not that of the court.

LZK HOLDINGS AND DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION VS. PLANTERS


DEVELOPMENT BANK
GR NO. 167998
APRIL 27, 2007

Facts: LZK Holdings obtained a 40M loan from Planters Bank on December 1996 and secured
the same with a Real Estate Mortgage over its lot located in La Union. The land was sold at
public auction after respondent extrajudicially foreclosed the property. LZK Holdings filed
before the RTC Makati a complaint for annulment of extra judicial foreclosure. Planters Bank
filed an ex-parte motion for the issuance of a writ of possession with the RTC-San Fernando.
The writ was issued.

Issue: Whether or not Planter’s Bank is entitled to the writ of possession over the LZK
Holdings’ parcel of land

Ruling: Yes. Under the principle of conclusiveness of judgement, the rght of Planters Bank to a
writ of possession is binding and conclusive on the parties. The doctrine of res judicata by
conclusiveness of judgement postulates that “when a right or fact has been judicially tried and
determined by a court of competent jurisdiction, or when an opportunity for such trial has been
given, the judgement of the court, as long as it remains unreversed, should be conclusive upon
the parties and those in privity with them.

SPS. NICASIO MARQUEZ VS. SPS. ALINDOG


GR NO. 184045
JANUARY 22, 2014

Facts: Anita Marquez extended a loan in the amount of P500,000 to a certain Gutierrez. As
security therefor, Gutierrez executed a Deed of Real Estate Mortgage dated June 16, 1998 over
the subject parcel of land. The mortgage was duly annotated. The property was foreclosed after
an extrajudicial foreclosure. Upon Gutierrez’s failure to redeem the same property, title was
consolidated in the name of Spouses Marquez with an annotation of adverse claim in the names
of Spouses Alindog. On March 21, 2000, Spouses Alindog filed a civil case for annulment of
real estate mortgage. Meanwhile, Anita filed an ex-parte petition for the issuance of a writ of
possession. RTC granted the same.
Issue: Whether or not the RTC acted with grave abuse of discretion when it issue the injunctive
writ which enjoined Sps. Marquez from taking possession of the subject property

Ruling: It is an established rule that the purchaser in an extra-judicial foreclosure sale is entitled
to the possession of the property and can demand that he be placed in possession of the same
either during (with bond) or after the expiration (without bond) of the redemption period
therefor. The Court has ruled in long line of cases that a writ of possession duly applied for by
said purchaser in a public auction of an extrajudicially foreclosed real property should issue as a
matter of course, and thus, merely constitutes a ministerial duty on the part of the court. It is thus
settled that the buyer in a foreclosure sale becomes the absolute owner of the property purchased
if it is not redeemed during the period of one year after the registration of the sale. As such, he is
entitled to the possession of the said property and can demand it at any time following the
consolidation of ownership in his name and the issuance to him of a new transfer certificate of
title.

In this case, it is clear that the issuance of a writ of possession in favor of Spouses
Marquez, who had already consolidated their title over the extrajudicially foreclosed property, is
merely ministerial in nature. The general rule as herein stated – and not the exception found
under Section 33, Rule 39 of the Rules – should applysince Spouses Alindog hinged their claim
over the subject property on their purported purchase of the same from its previous owner, i.e.,
Spouses Gutierrez. Accordingly, it cannot be seriously doubted that Spouses Alindog are only
the latter’s (Sps. Gutierrez) successors-in-interest who do not have a right superior to them. The
court ruled that the RTC’s finding anent the initial evidence adduced by Spouses Alindog
constitutes improper basis to justify the issuance of the writ of preliminary injunction in their
favor since it had no authority to exercise any discretion in this respect. Hence, since the
consummation of the act sought to be restrained had rendered Spouses Alindog’s injunction
petition moot, the issuance of the said injunctive writ was altogether improper.

HEIRS OF AGAPITO OLARTE VS. OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE


PHILIPPINES
GR NO. 177995
JUNE 15, 2011

Facts:
Subject of the instant case is a parcel of land located in Malate, Manila. The property used to be
owned by the Philippine National Railways (PNR), but was later turned over to the National
Housing Authority (NHA).Petitioners claim that their parents started occupying the subject
property in 1943 by virtue of a lease contract with the PNR and constructed thereon a two-storey
residential house. On November 3, 1965, the Board of Liquidators under the Office of the
President (OP) awarded a Certificate of Priority to Agapito Olarte. When their parents passed
away, petitioner Norma was then designated as administratrix of the subject property. Thereafter,
the two-storey residential house was declared in the name of Agapito for taxation purposes.
Subsequently, petitioners leased out a portion of the residential house to respondents Timbang
and Ocampo. Ocampo was judicially ejected from the premises by petitioners for non-payment
of rentals. The NHA issued a Resolution stating therein that Timbang and Ocampo are the
only qualified beneficiaries of the subject lot for having been censused as renters therein while
petitioners are all disqualified for not being census residents within the project site.

Issue: Whether or not the Court’s final judgment sustaining Ocampo’s ejectment from the
subject property is conclusive to determine whether petitioners are entitled to the award under
the ZIP

Ruling:
NO. The only issue for resolution in an ejectment case is physical or material possession of the
property involved, independent of any claim of ownership by any of the party litigants. An
ejectment case is designed to restore, through summary proceedings, the physical possession of
any land or building to one who has been illegally deprived of such possession, without prejudice
to the settlement of the parties’ opposing claims of juridical possession in appropriate
proceedings. Any ruling on the question of ownership is only provisional and made for the sole
purpose of determining who is entitled to possession de facto. Certainly, a judgment in an
ejectment case could only resolve the question as to who has a better right to possess the
subject property but definitely, it could not conclusively determine whether petitioners are
entitled to the award under the ZIP or ascertain if respondents are disqualified beneficiaries

ABAD VS. FARRALES


GR NO. 178635
APRIL 11, 2011

Facts:
Abads agreed to leased a boarding house to Teresita. During the repair of the property, Oscar and
Daisy came, accompanied by two men, and forcibly took possession of the boarding house.
Petitioner Servillano Abad filed a complaint for forcible entry against the two before the
Metropolitan Trial Court(MeTC).Oscar and Daisy vehemently denied that they forcibly seized
the place. They claimed ownership of it by inheritance. To bolster their claim, Oscar and Daisy
presented copies of rental receipts going back from 2001 to 2003. They would not have been
able to lease the rooms unless they were in possession. Further, Oscar and Daisy asked the
MeTC to dismiss the action on the ground of failure of Abad to show that he and his wife
enjoyed prior physical possession of the property, an essential requisite in forcible entry cases.

Issue:
Whether or not Abad sufficiently alleged in his complaint the jurisdictional fact of prior physical
possession

Ruling:
Yes, Abad sufficiently alleges in his complaint the jurisdictional fact of prior physical possession
of the disputed property to vest the MeTC with jurisdiction over his action. Two allegations are
indispensable in actions for forcible entry to enable first level courts to acquire jurisdiction over
them: first, that the plaintiff had prior physical possession of the property; and, second, that the
defendant deprived him of such possession by means of force, intimidation, threats, strategy, or
stealth. There is no question that Abad made an allegation in his complaint that Oscar and Daisy
forcibly entered the subject property. The only issue is with respect to his allegation, citing such
property as one "of which they have complete physical and material possession of the same until
deprived thereof." Abad argues that this substantially alleges plaintiffs prior physical possession
of the property before the dispossession, sufficient to confer on the MeTC jurisdiction over the
action. The Court agrees. The plaintiff in a forcible entry suit is not required to use in his
allegations the exact terminology employed by the rules. It is enough that the facts set up in the
complaint show that dispossession took place under the required conditions. It is of course not
enough that the allegations of the complaint make out a case for forcible entry. The plaintiff must
also be able to prove his allegations. He has to prove that he had prior physical possession for
this gives him the security that entitles him to remain in the property until a person with a better
right lawfully ejects him. Here, evidently, the Abads did not take physical possession of the
property after buying the same since they immediately rented it to Teresita who had already been
using the property as a boarding house.

WILLMON AUTO SUPPLY CORP VS. CA


GR NO. 97637
APRIL 10, 1992

Facts:
Petitioners were lessees of a commercial building and bodegas owned in common by Lucy A.
Solinap, Fr. Jerry R. Locsin, Lourdes C Locsin, Manuel C. Locsin and Ester L. Jarantilla. In their
lease contract, there was a “reservation of right” clause stating that the lessor reserves the rights
to sell, mortgage, hypothecate or encumber the property so long as it requires the purchase or
mortgage creditors to respect the terms of the lease contract; provided further that lessee shall be
duly informed about lessor’s plan to sell the property (herein referred to as “leasehold rights”).
After the expiration of the lease contract, the lessors sold the property to respondent Star Group
Resources and Development Inc. Thereafter, the respondent filed against the petitioner, who
stayed despite the expiration of their lease contract, for unlawful detainer. The lessees refused to
concede and even impugned the right of the respondent to eject them. Petitioners filed a case in
the RTC to enforce their leasehold and pre-emptive rights, which include the declaration of the
sale null and void, their right of redemption, and to recover their two-month deposits against the
respondent in the dispute premises. Subsequently they filed a motion to dismiss the ejectment
case because of the case they filed with RTC.

Issue:
Whether or not an action of unlawful detainer filed in the MTC against a lessee grounded on the
expiration of the latter’s lease should be suspended by an action filed in the RTC by the
defendant lesse on the claim that he is entitled to a right of preemption of the premises in
question and wishes to have said right judicially enforced

Ruling:
NO. An ejectment suit cannot be suspended by an action filed in the RTC based on tenant’s
claim that his right of preemption was violated. The underlying reasons for the this were that the
actions in the RTC did not involve physical or de facto possession, and on not a few occasions,
that the case in the RTC was merely a ploy to delay disposition of the ejectment proceeding, or
that the issues presented in the former could quite as easily be set up as defenses in the ejectment
action and there resolved
It has also been decided in a long line of cases that cases wherein ownership (possession de jure)
is the issue does not a bar or suspend ejectment cases (which tackles possession de facto.) The
Court however stressed that when in forcible entry and unlawful detainer cases, “the defendant
raises the question of ownership in his pleadings and the question of possession cannot be
resolved without deciding the issue of ownership.” The MTC nevertheless have the undoubted
competence to resolve “the issue of ownership x x only to determine the issue of possession”